Graduate Student, Laboratory of Mark Hersam
Carbon nanotubes (green) have unique optical and electronic properties that could revolutionize efforts in microelectronics and renewable energy. Carbon nanotubes are more conductive when precisely aligned, but this is difficult to achieve since nanotubes tend to form random networks. In Shastry’s lab, carbon nanotubes are dissolved in a water and surfactant solution. When the solution evaporates, the nanotubes assemble into highly aligned formations, much like the way a ring forms at the edge of a coffee stain. Conductive pads (yellow) are used to test the conductivity of these well-ordered networks, which could pave the way for cheaper, more efficient flat-screen TVs.